The short answer: No!
Coffee grounds are plumbing’s worst enemy yet a garden’s best friend. Plants, soil, and even worms love them.
The temptation to quietly throw coffee grounds down the kitchen sink can be hard to resist. But don’t do it. It may seem like a quick and easy way to get rid of the remnants of your brew. However, as plumbers, we strongly advise giving in to this urge. They may be tiny, but coffee grounds can wreak havoc on your drainpipes.
Are coffee grounds bad for drains?
You may have heard that coffee grounds are good for drainpipes because they are abrasive and clean the sides. Unfortunately, this is simply an urban myth.
Put coffee grounds down the sink and over time, they can build up and mix with grease, soap, and other food scraps. They then stick to your pipes and impede the flow of water. You may be able to shift this build-up with a plunger, but in most circumstances, the only solution is to call out a plumber. Your home-brewed cup of coffee just got costly.
Can coffee grounds clog a sink?
“Coffee grounds act like a net, catching other food being washed down the sink and causing blockages in your plumbing. Along with grease and oil, coffee grounds are the worst offenders. Like eggshells, they don’t really break down, and over time can cause a blockage. It’s a common problem we come across,” says Certified Plumber, Dave Flaherty.
Even if you have a waste disposal unit, a good rule of thumb is not to put anything down there that you wouldn’t be able to chew through.
If your home has a septic tank, it’s even more important you avoid disposing of coffee grounds down the sink. The grounds do not readily break down.
“Septic systems require a delicate balance of waste breakdown. Coffee grounds can disrupt this balance and lead to issues that are both expensive and unpleasant to deal with.”
So, what’s the best way to get rid of coffee grounds?
Coffee grounds are rich in organic matter and nutrients. Throw them down the sink and you’re missing out on an opportunity to contribute to environmental sustainability.
They are ideal for use in your compost or your garden. Coffee grounds will help to add nitrogen. Many people simply put them straight into the garden as a fertilizer. Working them into the soil around plants can improve drainage, water retention and aeration.
Sprinkle coffee grounds around your garden to deter insects and pests. The caffeine keeps your fruit and veggies safe from munching intruders. Sprinkle them around the stem and base of your plants to prevent fungal infections. They can even keep cats and dogs away, so your garden is also safe from four-legged intrusions.
Put them in your soil, not your sink
Don’t let the power of used coffee grounds go down the drain. Your garden will thank you, and your plumbing will stay clog-free.
Here at FlowFix, we love this solution. If you would like further information on this or any other plumbing topic, please check through our other blogs with helpful plumbing tips or contact us and we will be happy to help.